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Cooperative Nursery School Of Ridgewood

100 Dayton Street
Ridgewood, NJ 07450

(201) 447-6232


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Co-op

From the Director:

The Co-op offers a wide range of developmentally appropriate activities for your child. The school fosters a love of learning. Developmentally appropriate academics and school readiness skills are woven into the daily curriculum. There is a healthy combination of independent, small group, and whole class work. Free play, guided activities, and teacher-directed instruction are ALL an important part of the school's program.

Curriculum & Teaching Approach

Learning Philosophy & Tools

  Play- based mostly teacher led not formally in curriculum conducive environment
Language       more

More Information

  • Tracing paper and other writing instruments
  • A well-stocked bookcase
  • Handwriting Without Tears Curriculum & Materials, Interactive Read Alouds, Listening Centers, Writing Centers, and Games
Oral language  
Nursery rhymes, poems, songs  
Storybook reading  
Emerging literacy skills  
Cognitive development
Math & number sense more

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  • Puzzles
  • Centers and teacher led instruction
Time & space more

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  • Calendars and clocks
  • Parquetry blocks, pegboards, and mosaic toys
  • Building blocks
Sci. reasoning/physical world more

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  • A place for science activities such as growing plants
  • Pets for children to watch and care for
Music more

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  • Musical instruments
  • Music is incorportated in the classroom daily and with the music teacher weekly
Visual arts more

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  • Materials such as paint, ink, paintbrushes, crayons, markers, chalk, paper, etc.
  • Art work on the walls
  • Various mediums are utilized throughout the year
Physical activity more

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  • A playground with climbing equipment
  • Bean bags, balls, and other objects that children can throw, kick, and play
  • Tricycles
  • Enough room for children to move around and play and a suitable indoor alternative to the outdoor playground on rainy days
  • Sandboxes and/or water stations for play
  • Additional instruction provided weekly with physical education teacher
Other subjects taught

From the Director:

Students are encouraged to participate in a wide range of curricular experiences through independently run centers. Direct instruction is also a part of the day. Of course, meaningful learning ALWAYS takes place through play!!!

Quality of Teaching

Individualized Teaching: From the Director

Our teachers receive professional development training each year to further their expertise in this and all areas.

Day in the Life

General School Mission

"The Cooperative Nursery School of Ridgewood offers a unique and positive preschool experience for children, ages 1 1/2 to 6 years. Children learn and play in an environment ideally suited to their needs as developing individuals. Our highly trained teaching staff guides your child in achieving social, emotional, and physical wellbeing. Our small classes enable our staff to recognize each child as an exceptional and creative individual. Our special attention to the needs of preschoolers provides a warm and caring environment as we encourage independence, self-discipline and a love for school."
Excerpted from the preschool's website

A Typical Day

Each day starts with a period of guided free play during which the children move among various activities and centers. Painting and other art projects are always available. A dress-up corner and play kitchen also stimulates the imagination. An extensive block and toy collection facilitates cooperative or solo play.
Later, clean-up time leads into circle time. The children come together to enjoy stories, songs and whole group instruction.
After circle time, children participate in creative art, academic, and/or experiential activities. The class is broken down into smaller groups to ensure that children get the attention and assistance that they need.
The also children eat a healthy snack. After helping to clean up their place settings, children end the session by preparing for active play on the outdoor playground, where there are tricycles and other age-appropriate ride-on toys, climbing equipment, and slides. In inclement weather, children enjoy active play in the Rainy Day Room, which features a play structure, building blocks, gymnastic mats, ride-on toys and an indoor basketball hoop.
The co-op also features supplemental programs throughout the school year:
MUSIC: In addition to routine songs and musical activities that take place in the classroom, each class has a weekly music session with our music teacher.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION: To supplement daily free play on the playground or in our Rainy Day Room, gym classes are offered for all 3 and 4 year olds on a weekly basis beginning in October, and for 2 year olds beginning in January. Our gym teacher puts together a weekly curriculum that helps to develop children's large motor skills, as well as opportunities for sharing and teamwork.
LIBRARY: Each class visits the school library once a week. The library is managed by participating parents. Children will enjoy participating in an interactive read aloud and borrowing books that correspond with the changing seasons or lesson plans currently followed in their classrooms.
EXTENDED DAY PROGRAMS: Each day, a different enrichment activity is offered. Extended day programs are available for the 3 and 4 year old classes.

Home-School Connection

Home-School Connection: From the Director

This school is a "co-op" which means parents are in the classroom working side-by-side with our highly trained teaching staff. Parents get the opportunity to see first hand what is happening in the classroom and how their child is developing and growing. Not only that, the school is run by a board comprised of mostly participating parents. All parents are welcome at these monthly meetings. Parent-teacher meetings and conferences are held at various points throughout the year. The director holds monthly "Chat and Snack" sessions where parents can provide feedback and ideas. Optional parent workshops will also be provided beginning this year.

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are required to make donations ourselves
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school


Separation is Handled through:

  • Pre-entry meetings with parents at school
  • Small group sessions
  • Parents in classroom early on
  • Abbreviated schedule at start of school year

Handling Separation: From the Director

Our staff is senistive to the individual needs and concerns of each student (and parent!)
Class moms also organize optional class playdates before school begins so that the children become familiar and friendly with one another.